The latest medical research on Immunology & Allergy

The research magnet gathers the latest research from around the web, based on your specialty area. Below you will find a sample of some of the most recent articles from reputable medical journals about immunology & allergy gathered by our medical AI research bot.

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A Comparison of the Effectiveness of Asthma Medications on Asthma Exacerbations in Real World National Cohort.

Journal of Asthma and Allergy

Although a wide variety of asthma medications have been developed and are used in clinical practice, there is limited evidence of their comparative effects on asthma exacerbations.

We used claims data provided by the Health Insurance Review and Assessment Service. We selected subjects commencing asthma treatment between July 1, 2017 and June 30, 2018, with no change in drug regimen. The primary outcome was asthma exacerbation requiring systemic corticosteroids. Cox regression analysis was used to assess outcomes considering the exacerbation-free period.

Of the 254,951 asthma subjects, 107,694 subjects (42.2%) experienced asthma exacerbation. Inhaled corticosteroids (ICSs) (hazard ratio [HR], 0.378-0.508), ICS-long-acting β 2-agonist (LABAs) (HR, 0.284-0.479), long-acting muscarine antagonists (LAMAs) (HR, 0.432-0.572), leukotriene receptor antagonists (LTRAs) (HR, 0.371-0.419), and xanthines (HR, 0.326-0.482) significantly reduced the rate of first and second exacerbation of asthma (all P-values, <0.001). The clinical effectiveness of asthma medications varied according to the active ingredient (HR 0.164-0.670) and was significant for all active ingredients (all P-values, <0.001). The effectiveness of combination treatment using ICS-LABA and LTRA varied (HR, 0.159-0.670); however, all combination treatment options evaluated were effective in preventing asthma exacerbations (all P-values, <0.001). Long-term use of ICS-LABA (HR, 0.278-0.653), LTRA (HR, 0.259-0.628), and xanthines (HR, 0.351-0.783) showed consistent effectiveness (all P-values, <0.001).

This real-world study showed that the effectiveness of asthma medications varied according to drug type, active ingredient, combination, and period of use, although effectiveness was significant in all cases studied.

Determinants of Asthma Attack Among Adult Asthmatic Patients Attending at Public Hospitals of West Shoa Zone, Oromia Regional State, Ethiopia, 2021: Case-Control Study.

Journal of Asthma and Allergy

Asthma attacks are life-threatening episodes that place a costly burden on the individual and the community in both high- and low-income countries including Ethiopia. There is scant information on the determinant of it in the study area.

To identify determinants of asthma attack among adult asthmatic patients attending at public hospitals of West Shoa Zone, Oromia Regional State, Ethiopia.

An institutional-based unmatched case-control study design was conducted. In this study, 300 participants (100 cases and 200 controls) were included. A pre-tested structured questionnaire was used to collect data. After the data were entered into Epidata version 3.1, it was exported to SPSS version 25 for analysis. First, bivariable logistic regression was performed. Independent variables with a p-value < 0.25 in binary logistic regression were entered into a multivariable logistic regression model. In the multivariable logistic regression model, independent variables with a p-value < 0.05 were considered to be significant determinants of the outcome variable of the study.

This finding identified that upper respiratory tract infection (AOR = 5.89, 95% CI: 2.72, 12.79), obstructive sleep apnea (AOR = 3.48, 95% CI: 1.58, 7.66), passive smoker (AOR = 5.93, 95% CI: 2.07, 16.96), spring season (AOR = 2.49, 95% CI: 1.27, 4.89), pet ownership (AOR = 3.63, 95% CI: 1.82, 7.22), kitchen smoke (AOR = 2.31, 95% CI: 1.6, 4.6), rhinitis (AOR = 4.49, 95% CI: 2.25, 8.93) and being jobless (AOR = 5.68, 95% CI: 1.94, 16.68) were significant determinants of asthma attack.

In this study, upper respiratory tract infection, obstructive sleep apnea, passive smoker, spring season, kitchen smoke, pet ownership, rhinitis, and being jobless were identified as significant determinants of an asthma attack. Because asthma attacks are life-threatening events, effective methods and interventions on determinants of asthma attack incidence should be implemented.

Is Icatibant Safe for the Treatment of Hereditary Angioedema During Pregnancy?

Current Allergy and Asthma Reports

Hereditary angioedema (HAE) is a disorder affecting bradykinin regulation presenting as recurrent cutaneous or mucosal swelling. Treatment options include plasma-derived or human-recombinant C1-inhibitor, icatibant, or ecallantide. Due to the lack of knowledge and experience on the topic, the treatment of choice in pregnancy is plasma-derived C1-inhibitor, and reporting any new experience is recommended. This review presents current guidelines for HAE treatment with a focus on pregnancy and reviews all experience with icatibant use during pregnancy.

Our experience of treating a pregnant nC1-INH HAE patient with icatibant is presented, with no adverse effects or abnormalities, to add to the growing knowledge of icatibant use during pregnancy. Considering the limited number of attacks that our patient usually experiences, which continued at more or less the same frequency during pregnancy, we feel icatibant to be a safe choice for on-demand HAE treatment during pregnancy for such cases.

Pediatric and Adult Asthma Clinical Phenotypes: A Real World, Big Data Study Based on Acute Exacerbations.

J Asthma

Asthma is a heterogeneous disease with a range of observable phenotypes. To date, the characterization of asthma phenotypes is mostly limited to allergic versus non-allergic disease. Therefore, the aim of this big data study was to computationally derive asthma subtypes from the OneFlorida Clinical Research ConsortiumMethods: We obtained data from 2012-2020 from the OneFlorida Clinical Research Consortium. Longitudinal data for patients greater than two years of age who met inclusion criteria for an asthma exacerbation based on International Classification of Diseases codes. We used matrix factorization to extract information and K-means clustering to derive subtypes. The distributions of demographics, comorbidities, and medications were compared using Chi-square statistics.

A total of 39,807 pediatric patients and 23,883 adult patients met inclusion criteria. We identified five distinct pediatric subtypes and four distinct adult subtypes. Pediatric subtype P1 had the highest proportion of black patients, but the lowest use of inhaled corticosteroids and allergy medications. Subtype P2 had a predominance of patients with gastroesophageal reflux disease, whereas P3 had a predominance of patients with allergic disorders. Adult subtype A2 was the most severe and all patients were on biologic agents. Most of subtype A3 patients were not taking controller medications, whereas most patients (>90%) in subtypes A2 and A4 were taking corticosteroids and allergy medications.

We found five distinct pediatric asthma subtypes and four distinct adult asthma subtypes. Future work should externally validate these subtypes and characterize response to treatment by subtype to better guide clinical treatment of asthma.

Analysis of Cytokine Production Profiles of Local and Systemic Lymphocytes in Sick Building Syndrome Compared with Ocular Allergy.

Journal of Asthma and Allergy

We have previously studied clinical and allergological aspects of sick building syndrome (SBS) cases with ocular disorders and found that SBS is suggested to be partially induced by an allergic response. We analyzed the cytokine production profiles of conjunctival and peripheral blood lymphocytes in patients with SBS with ocular manifestations to further evaluate the pathophysiology of SBS from an immunological standpoint.

We obtained conjunctival samples and peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) from 15 cases of SBS with ocular findings, 49 cases of allergic conjunctival diseases (ACD) (allergic conjunctivitis (AC), atopic keratoconjunctivitis (AKC), and vernal keratoconjunctivitis (VKC)), and normal controls. Frequencies of cytokine-producing T cells were analyzed by flow cytometry based on an intracellular cytokine staining method.

Although no significant difference was observed in the percentage of interferon (IFN)-γ-producing CD4+ T cells in PBMC between patients with SBS and controls, the percentage of interleukin (IL)-4-producing PBMC CD4+ T cells in patients with SBS was significantly higher than that in controls. The percentage of IL-4-producing CD4+ T cells in the conjunctiva in patients with SBS was significantly higher than that in controls, whereas it was significantly lower than that in AKC and VKC. A significant correlation was observed between the percentage of IL-4-producing CD4+ T cells in the conjunctiva and clinical score.

These results suggest that SBS may be a kind of allergic disorder and that IL-4 plays a role in the development of allergic disorders in SBS ocular lesions.

CYSLTR1 rs320995 (T927C) and GSDMB rs7216389 (G1199A) Gene Polymorphisms in Asthma and Allergic Rhinitis: A Proof-of-Concept Study.

Journal of Asthma and Allergy

Asthma and allergic rhinitis have been reported to be strongly associated with genetic factors. The aim of this study was to evaluate the accuracy of the TaqMan-MGB (minor groove binder) qPCR method for detecting CYSLTR1 rs320995 (T927C) and GSDMB rs7216389 (G1199A) gene polymorphisms as well as to explore the association of CYSLTR1 rs320995 and GSDMB rs7216389 polymorphisms with genetic susceptibility of Chinese patients with asthma and allergic rhinitis.

In this study, 310 asthmatic patients and 60 healthy individuals were recruited in Peking Union Medical College Hospital. The CYSLTR1 rs320995 (T927C) and GSDMB rs7216389 (G1199A) gene polymorphisms in each group were analyzed by TaqMan-MGB qPCR and DNA sequencing which was regarded as the gold standard. After the validation of this method, additional 71 patients with allergic rhinitis and 72 patients with asthma combined with allergic rhinitis were selected and tested by using TaqMan-MGB qPCR.

The TaqMan-MGB qPCR results were fully consistent with DNA sequencing results (Kappa = 1, P<0.001). In addition, the results of the TaqMan-MGB qPCR assay were not affected by bilirubin and lipids. We found differential distribution of CYSLTR1 rs320995 genotypes in female patients with asthma combined with allergic rhinitis (χ 2=6.172, P=0.046, statistical power = 0.591). Specifically, the TT genotype is more frequent in women suffering from asthma with allergic rhinitis, whereas the TC genotype is more prevalent in healthy women. However, no such associations were observed in the GSDMB rs7216389 polymorphism.

We have established a reliable TaqMan-MGB qPCR method for the detection of CYSLTR1 rs320995 and GSDMB rs7216389 polymorphisms. Moreover, the CYSLTR1 rs320995 polymorphism may be associated with genetic susceptibility of Chinese female patients with asthma and allergic rhinitis. Multicenter studies with larger sample sizes are required in the future.

Anaphylaxis in Chinese Children: Different Clinical Profile Between Children with and without a History of Asthma/Recurrent Wheezing.

Journal of Asthma and Allergy

Asthma and recurrent wheezing (RW) have been identified as risk factors for anaphylaxis; however, little is known about the characteristics of anaphylaxis in children with a history of asthma or RW in Chinese children.

This was a retrospective, observational chart review of children who were diagnosed with anaphylaxis in a tertiary children's hospital between 2014 and 2021. Patients' demographics, symptoms, triggers and presence of physician-diagnosed asthma/RW history were collected from medical charts.

A total of 399 anaphylactic reactions in 264 patients were analyzed; 119 patients (45.1%) had a history of asthma/RW. Food was the most common cause (85.5%, 341/399). Compared with patients without a history of asthma/RW, buckwheat-induced anaphylaxis was significantly more common in the asthma/RW group (9.4% vs 0.5%, p < 0.001), patients with a history of asthma/RW had higher rates of oropharyngeal symptoms (17.3% vs 8.6%, p = 0.011) and wheezing (34.5% vs 15.9%, p < 0.001). Ninety-one reactions (22.8%, 91/399) presented as severe anaphylaxis, but no difference existed between asthma/RW and non-asthma/RW groups. Children with a history of asthma/RW were more likely to receive inhaled β agonists than children without a history of asthma/RW (11.8% vs 2.5%, p = 0.003). A larger proportion of children without asthma/RW history were treated with epinephrine (11.7%) than children with asthma/RW history (6.9%).

Our finding revealed that different clinical profiles of anaphylaxis in children with and without a history of asthma/RW. Our study did not find that children with a history of asthma/RW have more severe anaphylactic reactions compared with children without asthma/RW. Buckwheat-induced anaphylaxis was more common in the asthma/RW group, wheezing and oropharyngeal symptoms affected a higher proportion of the asthma/RW group.

Proinflammatory and cardiovascular biomarkers are associated with echocardiographic abnormalities in children with HIV taking antiretroviral therapy.


Children with perinatally-acquired HIV (PHIV) and taking antiretroviral therapy (ART) have a high prevalence of subclinical cardiac disease. We hypothesised that cardiac disease may be a consequence of dysregulated systemic immune activation driven by HIV infection. We examined cardiovascular and proinflammatory biomarkers and their association with echocardiographic abnormalities in children with PHIV.

Cryopreserved plasma samples were used to measure seven soluble biomarkers using multiplex bead assay (Luminex). Multivariable logistic regression assessed how biomarker levels related to cardiac abnormalities.

A total of 406 children participated in this study (195 PHIV and 211 HIV-uninfected). Mean (standard deviation (SD)) ages of PHIV and HIV-uninfected participants were 10.7 (2.6) and 10.8 (2.8) years, respectively. Plasma levels of CRP, TNF-α, ST2, VCAM-1 and GDF-15 were significantly higher in the PHIV group compared to uninfected control (p < 0.001). Among children with PHIV, with one-unit representing one SD in biomarker level, a one-unit increase in CRP and GDF-15, was associated with increased odds of having left ventricular (LV) diastolic dysfunction [adjusted odds ratio (aOR), 1.49 (1.02-2.18; P < 0.040)] and [aOR 1.71 (1.18-2.53; P = 0.006)] respectively. Each one unit increase in GDF-15 was associated with increased odds of LV hypertrophy [aOR 1.84 (95% CI 1.10-3.10; p < 0.021)].

Children with PHIV had higher levels of proinflammatory and cardiovascular biomarkers compared to HIV-uninfected children. Increased CRP and GDF-15 were associated with cardiac abnormalities in children with PHIV.

Recent abacavir use and incident cardiovascular disease in contemporary treated people living with HIV.


Assessing whether the previously reported association between abacavir (ABC) and cardiovascular disease (CVD) remained amongst contemporarily treated people living with HIV (PLWH).

RESPOND participants were followed from latest of 01/01/2012 or cohort enrolment until the first of a CVD event (myocardial infarction [MI], stroke, invasive cardiovascular procedure [ICP]), last follow-up or 31/12/2019. Logistic regression examined odds of starting ABC by 5-year CVD or chronic kidney disease (CKD) D:A:D risk score. We assessed associations between recent ABC use (use within past six months) and risk of CVD with negative binomial regression models, adjusted for potential confounders.

Of 29,340 individuals, 34% recently used ABC. Compared to those at low estimated CVD and CKD risks, the odds of starting ABC were significantly higher among individuals at high CKD risk (odds ratio 1.12 [95% confidence interval, 1.04-1.21]) and significantly lower for individuals at moderate, high or very high CVD risk (0.80 [0.72-0.88], 0.75 [0.64-0.87], 0.71 [0.56-0.90], respectively). During 6.2 years median follow-up (interquartile range; 3.87-7.52), there were 748 CVD events (incidence rate [IR] 4.7/1000 persons-years of follow up [4.3-5.0]). The adjusted CVD IR ratio was higher for individuals with recent ABC use (1.40 [1.20-1.64]) compared to individuals without, consistent across sensitivity analyses. The association did not differ according to estimated CVD (interaction p = 0.56) or CKD (p = 0.98) risk strata.

Within RESPOND's contemporarily treated population, a significant association between CVD incidence and recent ABC use was confirmed and not explained by preferential ABC use in individuals at increased CVD or CKD risk.

Identification of early-induced broadly neutralizing activities against transmitted founder HIV strains.


: Broadly neutralizing antibodies (bnAbs) have been proposed as key actors for HIV vaccine development. However, they display features of highly matured Abs, hampering their induction by vaccination. As protective bnAbs should be induced rapidly after vaccination and should neutralize the early-transmitted founder (T/F) viruses, we searched whether such Abs may be induced following HIV infection.

: We compared neutralizing activity against T/F strains with neutralizing activity against non-T/F strains using the conventional TZM-bL neutralizing assay.

: We found nAbs preferentially directed against T/F viruses in sera collected shortly after infection. This humoral response evolved by shifting to nAbs directed against non-T/F strains.

: Although features associated with nAbs directed against T/F viruses need further investigations, these early-induced nAbs may display lesser maturation characteristics; therefore, this might increase their interest for future vaccine designs.

Physicians' Understanding of the Role of the Microbiome in Allergies and Asthma: A Questionnaire-Based Study in Saudi Arabia.

Journal of Asthma and Allergy

Allergies and asthma are two noncommunicable illnesses of increasing public health concern in Saudi Arabia. Nevertheless, little is known about knowledge of the microbiome and its relationship to asthma and allergy risks among healthcare professionals, such as pediatricians and family medicine practitioners, who are often involved in the care of patients suffering from these illnesses. Therefore, this study aimed to examine knowledge about microbiome science in these healthcare workers in the eastern region of the kingdom, where allergies and asthma are highly prevalent.

The study survey consisted of 37 online questions in three topical domains, including microbiome science, dysbiosis, and probiotics, and was distributed to 203 participants in various demographic groups.

The survey analysis revealed that the mean knowledge score was 67.6%. The component scores were highest for the microbiome (75.6%) and lowest for dysbiosis (52.6%). Only 17.7% of the healthcare workers were prescribing probiotic food or drinks for most of their patients with allergies and/or asthma; and 37.8% of the healthcare workers were unaware of the reasons for prescribing pro-/prebiotics. Regression analysis revealed that older age (>45 years old), probiotic prescription experience, and positive beliefs about the importance of nutritional advice were independent predictors of higher microbiome knowledge.

The analysis not only revealed existing gaps in microbiome knowledge among the participants, including those related to the role of the microbiome in allergy and asthma development but also identified predictors of higher microbiome knowledge. These observations provide an impetus for the rational design of continuing medical education curriculum and training to update healthcare professionals with emerging clinical application of microbiome knowledge for the management of microbiome-related illnesses.

A Pragmatic Primary Practice Approach to Using Specific IgE in Allergy Testing in Asthma Diagnosis, Management, and Referral.

Journal of Asthma and Allergy

Asthma afflicts an estimated 339 million people globally and is associated with ill health, disability, and early death. Strong risk factors for de...